Little J and Big Cuz learning resource
Engage with First Peoples' perspectives while building screen literacy.
Year levels: F - 3
Subjects: Drama, English, Personal and Social Capabilities
I love that it’s about two Indigenous kids and we are watching their adventures and them growing up in the world and that they are being taught what it means to be on country. And this show shows the diversity of what country means.
About Little J and Big Cuz
The first Indigenous animated series broadcast on Australian television, Little J and Big Cuz introduces viewers to the culture, stories and experiences of Australia’s First Peoples. Most of all, the show is about ordinary kids going to school, learning new things and having fun.
What a beautiful way for young learners to build understanding around culture and country, share stories and create connections!
A note for teachers
Little J and Big Cuz is an Australian animated series, the main characters are Little J and Big Cuz, a couple of Indigenous kids living with their Nanna and their pet dog, Old Dog. There is a host of other characters who are part of their world and contribute to themes and stories relating to friendship, family and community. Much of the action takes place at home, in the backyard and at school. Sometimes the family leaves this everyday world and goes on adventures to Saltwater, Desert or Freshwater Country where they find out about culture, community and country.
Find out about the series
Download the outstanding press kit to explore characters and find out about the creative team.
Visit the website
You can watch all episodes from season 1 here.
Visit the website to discover curriculum-focused resources.
Read the blog post by director Tony Thorne.
Introducing the show
Watch the trailer for Little J and Big Cuz below:
As a class make a list of everything you noticed in the trailer. (You might like to watch it a second time and check how much you noticed and were able to remember.)
Now discuss first impressions of:
- setting (indoors, at home and on country)
A trailer makes us curious so we want to watch the show.
- Discuss in pairs, what are you curious about?
- What would you like to learn more about?
Episode: Wombat Rex
Look carefully at this screen shot from Little J and Big Cuz.
This image comes from an episode called Wombat Rex. Rex means 'king'.
Note: Wombat Rex is also available in Pitjantjatjara.
In pairs, discuss:
- What do you see? I see ........
- What do you think about that? I think that ........
- What does it make you wonder? I wonder ........
- Share your ideas with the rest of the group.
Discuss as a class:
- What do you think the story might be about?
Now watch the episode!
(Teachers: find out more about the See Think Wonder learning routine here.
As a class, share your responses to the show
- Use describing words: was it funny, surprising, interesting?
- How did the program make you feel? Do you think others would feel the same way?
- What happens in the story?
- Which moment or event stood out?
- Which part of the story is your favourite?
- What new things did you learn?
- What did you learn about the giant wombat?
- Were any parts of the story similar to your own experiences?
- Some words used in this story include: yarn, the dreaming, megafauna and fossils. Find out what these and any other unfamiliar words mean.
- Challenge activity: working in pairs, cut out the images in the Story Worksheet and arrange in story order.
- List the different places in the story. Describe each of these places.
- What is similar to your world and what is different?
- Draw your favourite setting and try to use similar colours.
Sound and music
How does what you hear add to the story?
- Make a list of the characters in the episode. (If you need some help remembering names, you can find out more here.)
- Who are the main characters in the story?
- Look carefully at this screen shot (below) and discuss the design or look of the characters
- What are some of the ways you know what the characters are thinking and feeling?
Reflect and create
- Which character was your favourite? Why?
- What do you like most about this character?
- Use the character worksheet to describe and draw your character.
Learning about country
Big Cuz says "Giant wombat needs to stay where he belongs; he's part of country."
- Were you surprised when she, Little J ,and Nanna decide to leave the wombat's jawbone in place?
- Why do they decide to do this?
- Do you know what they mean by country? (Teachers, here is a helpful guide for you to refer to.)
- What about the country/land your school is on? Ask your teachers to invite an Elder from your community to share their stories about country with you. (Teachers, if you are in Victoria, you can contact VAEAI to link up with your Local Aboriginal Education Consultative Group. And check out this helpful resource.)
The stars in the sky
- What does Nanna show the children in the night sky?
- What can you see when you look up at the stars?
Play Little J and Big Cuz games
Play the Going Bush game to decide what belongs on country.